MOBILE, AL (WLOX) - Erin Akey is almost finished packing the canned goods that will go to needy families in Texas. Akey says she still remembers the day Hurricane Katrina devastated Bay St. Louis.
"I was living there with my mom and my kids, and we lost everything. Right after that my company transferred me to, Alabama, and at that time, it was difficult," Erin Akey said.
Thanks to generosity of strangers, Akey says she received food, clothing and furniture to help her get back on her feet. Now, this Katrina survivor and her new husband, Ben, are passing on that love to Hurricane Ike survivors.
"We don't want to have to wait on the government to get there."
"We all know the heartache of loss. We can stand around and be bitter or angry, or we can get up and do something about," Ben Akey said.
The couple has collected quite a few diapers, pillows, and even toys for the little ones.
"When there is no power, no stores open, no water, no infrastructure, you need things for your baby and yourself," Erin Akey said.
The Akeys want to set up collection points across the coast, including South Mississippi, so residents can donate food and supplies to people who have a long term need.
"This is going to be a year around operation. We want to be able to collect supplies and have things stored up and ready, so at a moments notice, we can load a truck and go where a disaster happens on the Gulf Coast," Ben Akey said.
Both Ben and Erin Akey say hopefully these donations will provide comfort to victims now left picking up the pieces after such a huge catastrophe.